Tera Allas, Bill Schaninger

Research shows that as people gain power, they lose the ability to judge a situation accurately, particularly with regard to how others will perceive their actions. They also lose some of their ability to empathize with people in positions of less relative power. Organizational leaders can tackle this tendency directly. While training courses for soft skills—such as providing and receiving feedback—need to become a more … [ Read more ]

How to be a great sponsor

When you’re asked to help young, underrepresented talent succeed, here’s what you’ll need to know to do the job right.

Kristen Etheredge

Traditionally, time and money are invested in nurturing high performers or coaching low performers. But organizations actually get better results from improving the performance of the majority of employees—the average workers. The key is to identify the bright spots in the workforce (those “outliers” whose work exemplifies high performance), focus on what they do differently, and replicate it across the majority. We call this approach “Shifting … [ Read more ]

Pull, Don’t Push: Designing Effective Feedback Systems

To get favorable results from performance evaluations, evaluators must set positive expectations, showing that they believe improvements can be made, and that the feedback itself — even negative feedback — is an opportunity to learn rather than a punitive final word. They should also be willing to assist with concrete steps toward the suggested improvements, including coaching and goal setting. Done correctly, performance feedback can … [ Read more ]

7 Problems With Your Onboarding Program

Over the past decade, many organizations have developed onboarding programs to improve retention, engagement and their overall employee experience.

But a recent study by Gallup has found that most organizations are falling woefully short of the mark. Only 12% of employees strongly agree their organization does a great job of onboarding new employees.

The consequences are significant regrettable turnover within the first year of employment and low … [ Read more ]

Darren Lee, Mike Pino, Ann Johnston

Although an initiative should not rely solely on extrinsic motivation, that is, rewards and penalties (because they shift people’s motivation to the transactional side and thus diminish genuine interest in learning), keeping score can be useful in fostering spaced repetition. It represents a more “gamified” approach to daily life. Employees might thus earn points for making progress in gaining skills, perhaps redeemable as merchandise.

Darren Lee, Mike Pino, Ann Johnston

Many corporate learning and training efforts fall short because they stop at delivering knowledge — giving employees new information about digital trends and tools, for example, but no opportunities for using them. For example, a conventional course covering blockchain might require an essay or test that demonstrates that the student knows how a digital ledger works, why it requires a great deal of energy, and … [ Read more ]

Darren Lee, Mike Pino, Ann Johnston

The usual type of event-based learning, in which people are sent away to learn in training events, workshops, classes, or even hackathons, is so separated from the rest of their lives that it’s very difficult to carry the insights and skills from the sessions back into daily work. If the new skills are not practiced, they are lost.

A more effective model is continual learning: learning … [ Read more ]

5 Questions Every Onboarding Program Must Answer

From Gallup’s perspective, onboarding should do two important things:

  1. fulfill the promises made during the hiring process
  2. lay the foundation for long-term engagement and performance

So what aspects of onboarding are proven to lay the foundation for consistent high performance?

Here are the five questions every employee needs to have answered if they are to have an exceptional onboarding experience.

Revealing Leaders’ Blind Spots

There is very little overlap between the management areas leaders think they need to improve and the weaknesses identified by those they lead. Reconciling these differences will improve leaders and their organizations.

Six Keys to Unlocking Upskilling at Scale

Research suggests that with the right mind-set, technological literacy, and community engagement, you can shepherd your entire workforce into the digital future.

The ‘Hidden Talent’ That Determines Success

In our era of globalization, your job performance may depend on your “CQ”. So what is it?

A Short Guide to Building Your Team’s Critical Thinking Skills

With critical thinking ranking among the most in-demand skills for job candidates, you would think that educational institutions would prepare candidates well to be exceptional thinkers, and employers would be adept at developing such skills in existing employees. Unfortunately, both are largely untrue.

But it doesn’t have to be this way.

To demystify what critical thinking is and how it is developed, our team at Zarvana turned … [ Read more ]

The Essential Components of a Successful L&D Strategy

The ACADEMIES framework is a useful tool for conceptualizing learning strategy.

Scott Keller, Mary Meaney

Every leader should mount a transition in two equally important stages: first take stock and then take action by asking questions about five basic dimensions of leadership—the strategy and operation of the business or function, the corporate culture, the team, the leader herself or himself, and other stakeholders that need to be managed. Beware of generic answers because every leader’s starting point is different. For … [ Read more ]

Scott Keller, Mary Meaney

Organizations most often try to help newly appointed leaders by supplying them with mentors or informal “buddy” networks. Yet only 47 percent of external hires and 29 percent of internal ones find these helpful. Standard orientation programs are the second most common approach, but only 19 percent of externally and 11 percent of internally recruited executives consider them effective. Some methods—for instance, tailored executive coaching … [ Read more ]

Whisper Courses: On-the-Job Microlearning with Email

Make learning stick. See how Google uses bite-sized lessons to help managers build psychological safety within their teams.

Jay Desai

I’d rather get sophisticated questions than simple answers from new hires. People often don’t think that asking questions is indicative of quick learning. They think it’s the opposite.

Listen to This Podcast on How Google Develops Great Managers

Managers have a big influence on the culture and happiness of the workplace. Hear from Google’s manager development team on how they select, train, and support managers.